Monday, May 20
Lunch on Your Own
11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. | Registration and Exhibit Area Open
1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. | Explore More
We all know the value of a growth mindset and the positive impact it can have on the lives of our students, but how do you get them to truly embrace this outlook on intelligence and ability? In this session, participants will review Dr. Dweck’s work along with other related prominent research, and learn different ways to cultivate a growth mindset at all levels (K-12). Unique and practical research-informed strategies will be shared which include everyday rituals, routines, grading practices and creative approaches for engaging students of all ages. In addition, suggestions will be provided to help participants think about how these strategies can be customized for a variety of learning environments.
Presented by Doug Enders, Elementary Principal, Wrightsville Elementary, Eastern York School District, Camp Hill, Pa.; and Jeff Gonce, Social Studies Department Chair, Red Land High School, New Cumberland, Pa.
Increasingly, schools and districts are getting on board with explicit social emotional learning (SEL) integration and direct instruction. However, organizing SEL programs, merging them with structures already in place, and assessing and adjusting a setting’s program can be barriers to quality SEL implementation and sustainability. This session will review the planning, implementing and assessment tools that support SEL integration at every phase of the process to ensure the highest quality of SEL integration. Participants will gain hands-on practice with tools that guide schools through the different phases of building comprehensive SEL programming.
Presented by Joshua Bobrow, Social Emotional Learning Manager, The Urban Assembly, New York, N.Y.; and David Adams, Director of Social Emotional Learning, The Urban Assembly, New York, N.Y.
Do you want to change the world? Most of us would say “yes” but then we would have to consider how we go about doing that. The answer is: “One room at a time and this is the room for today.” This session will unpack the six essential conversations to have and explore both the physical structure (room layout) and the linguistic mechanisms to use to initiate such change. A methodology called “A Small Group” (ASG) will be introduced which has been used across the world to create possibilities for personal transformation and organizational change. Key points of ASG include the power of invitation and why choice always trumps mandates; the power of possibility; the power of refusal; and finally, the power of focusing on gifts rather than deficiencies. Each participant will be provided with a 35-page booklet outlining the protocols and methods used and will experience novel techniques that allow new possibilities to flourish.
Presented by Lee Rush, Executive Director, justCommunity, Inc., Quakertown, Pa.
Despite the well-intentioned efforts of educators to meet the academic, social and emotional needs of their students, desired outcomes are not always realized. Complex contextual factors play a role in our success and are best addressed through a broad perspective rather through a single lens. When it comes to social emotional learning (SEL), sharing common definitions and competencies to anchor the work is a start, but a deeper dive is warranted to unpack the nuances of concepts, terms and expectations to ensure that the diverse experiences and backgrounds of the students and their families are at the forefront. The experiences and backgrounds for those we serve have implications for the “why” and “how” of implementing SEL, which affirm the reality that adopting a “one size fits all model” or an exact replication of practices from one site to another will likely result in needs going unmet. In this session, participants will review the CASEL Framework for Systemic Social and Emotional Learning through a lens of equity. Participants will be called on to think about additional language and concepts that would enhance the current framework to make it more representative and reflective of the range of experiences and strengths of students, especially those from underserved and/or marginalized communities.
Presented by Deidre Farmbry, District Senior Advisor, CASEL, Philadelphia, Pa.
“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” This famous quote by Benjamin Franklin illustrates the concept that active participation helps increase students’ capacity to learn and remember new concepts. Studies show that students who take reading comprehension tests after brief periods of moderate activity score a full grade level higher than peers who are sedentary prior to testing. So while movement not only provides a platform for building self-confidence and social interaction skills, it also clearly supports academic outcomes. Social emotional learning (SEL) and movement-based learning are natural partners that can help educators achieve “whole child” education in a very powerful way. This session will provide a framework for addressing social emotional learning through active, movement-based activities inspired by world cultures. Participants will increase their comfort level with facilitating movement-based activities and learn to use prompts and reflection to center active learning around SEL themes. This session also places an emphasis on celebrating diversity and empowering students to become global citizens.
Presented by Margot Toppen, Executive Director, EduMotion, Chicago, Ill.
While the concepts and theoretical frameworks of social emotional learning (SEL) have been around for decades, effective practices are a relatively new part of the education conversation. School systems nationwide are currently searching for ways to integrate SEL to promote pro-social behavior and to improve academics and life outcomes. In this Explore More session, participants will learn the 4 Phase SEL Process (rather than a program or a curriculum) that builds teacher efficacy for implementing SEL in the classroom through learning targets, student voice, rubrics and assessments that promote student achievement. Each of the 4 phases of SEL integration highlight necessary steps that guide educators to engage in effective SEL dialogue to create authentic data-driven instructional practices using their own students’ voices and their own school cultures to support ongoing social emotional learning.
Presented by Molly Gosline, SEL Coordinator, Adlai E. Stevenson High School, Lincolnshire, Ill.; and Anthony Reibel, Director of Assessment, Research and Evaluation, Adlai E. Stevenson High School, Lincolnshire, Ill.
Our ability to learn is heavily dependent on a secure educational atmosphere and authentic connections with caring individuals. Moreover, social skills and/or deficits indicate potential threats in that learning environment as well as one’s ability to connect with others. This session will explore the fundamental elements to a successful and safe learning environment and demonstrate how disruptive student behavior can be an indication that engagement and connection are lacking. Participants will learn connection strategies; and discuss social values such as fairness, inclusivity and empathy that can have a lasting impact on engagement and a strong sense of self. Interactive elements will be woven throughout the presentation to show participants not only why these strategies are relevant but exactly how they can begin to implement these connection and social awareness strategies immediately in the classroom.
Presented by Paula Prentis, Co-founder, Your Self Series, Bedford Hills, N.Y.
Social emotional skills are the foundation of humanity and must be nurtured and developed throughout a lifetime. Today’s students are faced with uncertain futures in careers that haven’t yet been imagined, but it is certain they will need to interact and collaborate with others from incredibly diverse backgrounds. The global economy already relies on international, usually virtual teams, working on complex situations and problems, adding new challenges to working in teams. The innovation process naturally lends itself to the development of all of CASEL’s core competencies while engaging in authentic experiences around the themes of creativity, storytelling, design and entrepreneurship. In this session, participants will explore the innovation process using engaging inquiry-based, practice-based and collaborative activities. Participants will work in small teams to create a prototype to solve an everyday problem, reflect on and share lessons learned and walk away from the session with proven instructional strategies to accelerate innovative learning in the classroom.
Presented by Andrea Keith, Vice President of Customer Success, EdgeMakers, Inc., San Francisco, Calif.
Politicians and the media have effectively used rhetorical devices to persuade and divide the public for generations. The impact of these influences on individual and group decision-making are significant and increasingly are influencing Americans to relate, congregate and seek out like-minded people, according to research. In many instances, schools have even shied away from highly charged topics in order to avoid controversy and debate instead of using these topics as learning opportunities to develop critical thinking and interpersonal skills. This workshop will explore ways in which integrated social emotional learning instruction and deliberative approaches to solving problems can reinforce the skills students and citizens need to bridge rhetorical and interpersonal divides, while teaching the skills of democratic citizenship. The workshop will address K-12 learning and will include a deliberative experience that allows the audience to experience first-hand the process and benefits of teaching students how to discuss controversial issues in ways that improve their self-awareness, interpersonal and critical thinking skills, and their ability to seek common ground.
Presented by Stacie Molnar-Main, Educational Consultant, Researcher and Author, Lancaster, Pa. and Donnan Stoicovy, Interim Principal and Independent Consultant, State College Friends School, State College, Pa.
Tuesday, May 21
7:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. | Mindfulness Room Open
Come and visit the Mindfulness Room any time throughout the day on Tuesday and Wednesday. Relax in the pleasant ambiance created for your comfort. Take a few minutes to soak in the atmosphere, breathe and enjoy the serenity. No formal instruction will be provided until each break. However, you will have the option to visit several “stations” set up with tools that you can try out and practice for yourself.
During breaks, meet Joanne Spence, executive director of Yoga in Schools. Joanne will lead mini yoga-inspired mindfulness breaks. Learn short but practical techniques that can be replicated in the classroom to encourage calmness, relaxation and self-reflection. Leave these mini-sessions refreshed and ready for your next workshop.
Please refrain from using cell phones or holding conversations in the room in order to honor the experience of our other guests.
7:30 a.m. – 8:15 a.m. | Gentle/Beginner Yoga
Taught by an experienced yoga teacher with a long history of working with teachers, administrators, children and people of all body types and abilities, this class will include some basic standing poses, sitting poses (on the floor or chair), reclining poses, breathing exercises and general breath-focus for mood management and relaxation.
Join us to refresh, restore and for a chance to practice self-care. This class will also inspire and support you to model calmness and well-being in your classroom. No experience or flexibility necessary. Feel free to change into comfortable clothes or come in conference attire.
Mats and chairs provided.
8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. | Registration and Exhibit Area Open
8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. | Continental Breakfast
9:00 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. | Opening Remarks and Keynote Address
In this keynote session, Dr. Debbie Silver will discuss how to help students work smarter and better. Based on her best-selling book, Fall Down 7 Times, Get Up 8: Teaching Kids to Succeed, she will share motivational theory and provide down-to earth examples of concrete, applicable guidelines for helping students overcome setbacks and failure in order to foster lifelong success.
10:45 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. | Exhibit Exploration
10:45 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. | Gentle/Beginner Yoga
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. | Lunch
12:30 p.m. – 12:45 p.m. | Exhibit Exploration
12:45 p.m. – 2:15 p.m. | Workshops
Research shows that adults who teach, model, and reinforce social and emotional skills are a key factor in the development of social, emotional and academic competence in students. This fun and interactive session will provide participants with an opportunity to explore and practice their own use of social and emotional skills and discover how they impact students’ success and well-being. Participants will leave this session empowered with specific strategies and approaches that they can use immediately to build their own social and emotional competence and improve student social and emotional skillfulness in the classroom and in all areas of life.
Presented by Penny Willis, Training and Program Development, Lions Quest LCIF, Oak Brook, Ill.
To achieve high-quality social emotional learning (SEL) implementation in our communities, we must influence and support education policymakers and leaders in states, cities, towns and communities. How can you raise public awareness, promote effective implementation, and advance policies and funding that can sustain and spread the use of high quality SEL? In this interactive workshop, you will learn strategies to influence key stakeholders and for organizing a grassroots movement to support SEL. You will also gain access to resources to support your efforts and connect with like-minded SEL advocates. The workshop will conclude with a planning activity to help prepare you to take action to promote SEL in your community.
Presented by Jim Vetter, Executive Director, Social-Emotional Learning Alliance for Massachusetts, Somerville, Mass.
Effective student social and emotional assessment is about much more than just a test. This workshop will provide practical strategies for educators to plan, implement and make the most out of assessing student social emotional learning (SEL) competencies. Participants will learn practical steps to identify what components of SEL are most important, clarify assessment goals, select the right assessment tool for the job and engage in use of high-impact data. Workshop participants can expect to begin the process of planning high-impact SEL assessment and they will walk away with tools they can use to continue engaging the process when they return to their home districts.
Presented by Clark McKown, President, xSEL Labs, Evanston, Ill.
Educators experience significantly more stress than professionals in other sectors. (childtrends.org) That stress can impact student stress levels, subsequent achievement and the overall school culture and climate. In this interactive, experiential session, participants will explore the connection between educator and student wellbeing and the need for comprehensive supports and emotional management strategies. Participants will learn how to facilitate a variety of exercises that strengthen wellbeing for both adults and students and explore the power that ritualized social emotional learning can have in the school community. In addition, proactive strategies for integrating educator support systems and stress management into district practices and procedures will be explored. Participants will leave with personalized action plans that take into account individual needs, district values and school-specific parameters.
Presented by Caitlin Daly, Education Consultant, Move This World, New York, N.Y.
No time in your day to teach SEL? We will show you how! We know teachers are increasingly busy and have limited time in the day to do anything “extra,” however, we know that teaching social emotional learning (SEL) is an important aspect of education. Research posits that students who are socially and emotionally competent are more successful in academics and in life. This presentation will demonstrate specific ways in which teachers can implement social emotional learning without adding any extra time to their day and how to seamlessly integrate SEL skill-building within ELA Standards. Participants will see how SEL lessons can be coordinated, explicit and developmentally sensitive. Tools and templates will be provided that guide the SEL integration process. As educators become familiar with these tools and use them more often, their own SEL competencies will grow, positively impacting their own levels of resilience and leading to stronger connections in the classroom.
Presented by Rhonda Hamerslough-Koester, Founder/CEO, Pawsitively Social Emotional Learning, Missoula, Mont.; and Melanie Quave, Educational Consultant, Pawsitively Social Emotional Learning, Oroville, Calif.
Self-awareness, is a fundamental competency and is defined by CASEL as “the ability to accurately recognize one’s own emotions, thoughts and values and how they influence behavior.” By enhancing our self-awareness, we are better equipped to understand emotional triggers, regulate emotions, develop positive relationships with self and others, and engage in pro-social problem solving. In this workshop we will explore skills that increase self-awareness, in an effort to improve emotional regulation.
Presented by Erin Bruno, SEL Consultant for the Center for the Promotion of Social and Emotional Learning and Director for Social Decision Making, Bedminster, N.J.
Compelling evidence shows that social emotional learning (SEL) improves academic success and life outcomes. Educators are also becoming increasingly aware that high numbers of students face trauma that impedes their learning and that racial inequities hamper the success of certain groups of students. In order for children to thrive, all of these aspects need to be examined in tandem, particularly since there is so much overlap between them. Yet many schools address them separately. In this interactive session, participants will explore latest research on SEL, trauma-informed work and cultural identity development, and why integrating these three areas of support is critical to student success. Participants will engage in discussion regarding their experiences integrating – or not integrating – these supports and hear what challenges they are facing, particularly around supporting struggling students. An array of resources and tools will be shared to support educators in integrating these domains for student SEL growth, behavior change and academic success.
Presented by Jessica Berlinski, Director K-12, Ripple Effects, Alameda, Calif.
ESSA legislation allows school districts to create unique frameworks to implement a multi-tiered system of support (MTSS) and encourages the use of alternate measures, such as social emotional learning (SEL) competencies to increase understanding of the whole child within the broader context of a MTSS. However, research has shown that MTSS efforts to date have not been successful due to the general flaws in implementation and the challenges that districts face in managing the basic infrastructure of MTSS and whole child data. In this workshop, participants will explore the nine systemic implementation flaws and ten infrastructure elements that are needed to provide a comprehensive model of whole child data and effective MTSS. Participants will learn how to integrate SEL data with other multiple measures from an MTSS tiered-intervention perspective and how to establish a systemic district infrastructure that supports student intervention teams in using whole child data.
Presented by Amy Jackson, Vice President, Research and Policy, Illuminate Education, Columbus, Ga. and Peter Whitmore, Director, Professional Services, Illuminate Education, Irvine, Calif.
Engaging students as active participants in their own social emotional learning (SEL) can be a challenge. Many students, especially those from marginalized communities, don’t see the material as relevant. However, by using stories written by other youth that reflect their students’ cultural experiences, educators can facilitate discussions that are relevant, meaningful and uniquely impactful. Not only is this story-based approach more engaging, but with the right stories, it provides students with positive peer models, who face their same issues and find ways to navigate a difficult, changing world. Stories alone are not enough, though. The discussion of stories and the activities surrounding them must also be youth-centered and bring the voices of the students to the forefront. In this interactive session, participants will analyze youth-written stories for their cultural relevance and demonstration of SEL strengths. Learn how to craft discussion questions that foster dialogue between students and get them to challenge one another in ways that encourage perspective-taking and the development of other social emotional competencies.
Presented by Tim Fredrick, Co-Director of Education, Youth Communication, New York, N.Y.
Initially formed in New York City in the early 1900s, school athletics were designed to train boys to work in factories. So, how much have school athletics changed from more than a century ago? Participants in this workshop will explore and engage in a discussion about how to redesign or reimagine school athletics by intentionally teaching student-athletes the social emotional learning (SEL) skills necessary for the 21st century. Relationship building, decision-making, problem solving, communication, emotion regulation, goal setting are all skills that can flourish within a student-centric, humanistic team model. Imagine teams and athletes modeling SEL for the entire school or district.
Presented by Mitch Lyons, President, Social-Emotional Learning Alliance for Massachusetts, Auburndale, Mass.; and Amalio Nieves, Executive Director of Social-Emotional Support, Baltimore County Public Schools, Towson, Md.
So, what does it actually mean to be career ready? Beyond having adequate content knowledge and technical prowess, we have to be able to manage ourselves, manage our relationships with others and make responsible decisions. School leaders today agree that these skills matter and yet they struggle with how to teach or reinforce these skills during the regular school day. This workshop will explore social emotional learning skills and their link to employability. Specific tools and strategies for practitioners will be shared to engage participants in working with and assimilating these skills into their daily practices with students. Tools designed for students and prospective employers will also be shared in order to address skill development comprehensively.
Presented by Pamela Emery, Social Emotional Learning and School Climate Consultant, Pennsylvania Department of Education, Harrisburg, Pa.; and James Palmiero, Director, Pennsylvania Department of Education, Pittsburgh, Pa.
For students to thrive in their frenzied, high-speed, hyper-connected environments, it is imperative for them to learn important competencies that go beyond academic standards. In this lively presentation, participants will be lead through activities that promote mindfulness, self-regulation, empathy, gratitude and other intrapersonal and interpersonal skills students need to find success both now and in the future. The presenter will convey meaningful points about the importance of thrive skills with significant data, poignant stories and humor.
Presented by Debbie Silver, Author and Speaker
2:15 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. | Exhibit Exploration and Program Pop-Ups
3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. | Workshops
Most educators today agree that social and emotional competencies are important. They may even be explicitly teaching these skills in the classroom through an social emotional learning (SEL) program. But just as we wouldn’t expect a child to learn to read fluently with only 30 minutes of explicit reading instruction once a week, we can’t expect SEL competencies to really flourish unless they are reinforced each day regardless of the academic subject being taught. In this interactive workshop, participants will learn practical steps to embed SEL into any academic lesson. From kindergarten to AP Geometry, social emotional competencies can be effectively integrated! Bring your own lesson plan to this workshop and be prepared to learn new techniques that enhance existing lessons and truly support the development of SEL skills.
Presented by Lorea Martinez, SEL Consultant, Lorea Martinez Consulting, San Carlos, Calif.
Youth often lack the knowledge and opportunities to develop life skills, consequently leaving them feeling unprepared when they are thrust into adulthood. To help prepare youth for independence, it is imperative to equip them with applicable life skills, education and experience so they can be more effective with managing high levels of responsibility and self-sufficiency. This session will provide strategies on how to teach life skills through structured curriculum lessons, inclusion of technology and hands-on experiential learning to prepare students for the real world.
Presented by Laura Perales, Associate Director of Transitional Living, Milton Hershey School, Hershey, Pa.; and Ashley Smith, Transitional Living Coordinator, Milton Hershey School, Hershey, Pa.
This workshop will provide participants with an overview of current research on disproportionality and its impact on schools, students, families and the communities in which they live. A brief examination of the challenges schools face in addressing disproportionality will be provided, but the primary focus will be on how to move from “admiring the problem” to implementing social emotional learning (SEL) as a viable solution. While not simply a program, SEL is a comprehensive approach in which CASEL’s five core competencies are embodied in a school’s core values, culture and climate to fundamentally address the systemic issues underlying disproportionality. Complemented by a social justice perspective, this comprehensive approach to SEL can help schools reduce discipline problems, improve student behavior, and increase student engagement and academic achievement. The presenter will offer insights and considerations for successful implementation of SEL as a viable solution to the disproportionate outcomes consistently demonstrated in school performance measures.
Presented by Donna Black, Faculty, Academy for Social-Emotional Learning in Schools, Morristown, N.J.
One of the fundamental beliefs behind all of education is that the brain has the capacity to change. This is easy to see in young learners who are discovering to read and write for the first time, but harder to recognize in older students with significant struggles in academics, relationships, emotional control and behavior. This presentation will use the example of a bike that was designed to turn the opposite way one steers it and to uncover our brain’s amazing capacity for change. In this session, we will discuss some of the reasons our students may be struggling academically, relationally, emotionally or behaviorally, and then explore healthy ways to promote positive brain change. Participants will see first-hand, in this engaging session, how mastery was achieved with a backwards bike and how those lessons learned can be applied in many classrooms and clinical settings.
Presented by Joshua MacNeill, Director of NeuroLogic Initiative, Lakeside, North Wales, Pa.; and Kathy Van Horn, Executive Vice President, Lakeside, North Wales, Pa.
Many students compare themselves to others and give up before trying to tackle a challenge. These struggling learners often tell themselves, “I can’t do it,” “It’s too hard for me,” or “The other kids are better than me.” The ability to use positive self-talk has a direct impact on academic, behavioral and social and emotional development. Identifying and then replacing negative thoughts with positive thoughts influences students’ ability to take initiation and maintain goal-oriented behaviors. This workshop will focus on identifying proactive and reactive language, what the underlying meaning is and how to teach students to take control of their thoughts and become empowered. Activities and resources will be made available for immediate use with students to foster the foundation of self-awareness, self-monitoring and self-talk. Watch students engage in the skills that it takes to become successful and to believe in themselves!
Presented by Lisa Navarra, Founder/President, Child Behavior Consulting, LLC, Nesconset, N.Y.
All students, even those from under-resourced communities, come into our schools, classrooms and programs with cultural strengths and assets. These strengths, often referred to as cultural capital, can often times get overlooked, misunderstood or even interpreted as a threat. When we recognize those strengths and build on them and allow youth to have a voice in the educational process, we not only create culturally relevant classrooms and schools but also develop the context for transformative encounters for students and staff to occur. In this workshop, participants will gain a practical understanding of how social emotional learning intersects with culturally relevant pedagogy and youth voice. A framework called Hip- Hop(e) will be shared which will engage participants in understanding how to create the culture and pedagogy in schools necessary to access and nurture the social and emotional competence and cultural capital that is already present in students’ lives. This session is also designed to engage participants in reflecting on and accessing their own competence and cultural capital. Be prepared to leave this session feeling empowered, inspired and full of hope!
Presented by Roberto Rivera, Chief Empowerment Officer, 7 Mindsets, Roswell, Ga.
Expanding on a cliché thought to be several centuries old “what gets measured, gets done,” educators frequently espouse a similar catchphrase, “what gets measured gets treasured” (i.e., what gets tested gets taught). But the options for measuring social emotional learning (SEL) skills appear rather limited, relying on two simple methods prone to a range of biases, practical and methodological constraints –
student self-reports and/or teacher ratings. In this workshop, participants be exposed to a range of new methods, including forced-choice, situational judgment, ecological momentary assessment, simulations, games, augmented reality and multi-method approaches. Each method has costs and benefits that will be delineated. The various approaches also lead to new scoring and reporting paradigms, and formative assessment opportunities that could enhance virtually any social emotional learning program. The workshop includes several opportunities to interact with key artifacts – assessment items/approaches, score reports and feedback strategies.
Presented by Katherine Bassett, Co-Founder, Research and Assessment Design: Science Solution, Morrisville, Pa.; Amy Riker, Co-Founder, Research and Assessment Design: Science Solution, Morrisville, Pa.; and Richard Roberts, Co-Founder, Research and Assessment Design: Science Solution, Morrisville, Pa.
What happens when research questions shift from measuring and replicating program outcomes to distilling and disseminating effective program practice? The SEL Challenge was a collaboration between Susan Crown Exchange (SCE), staff teams from eight exemplary youth programs, David P. Weikart Center for Youth Program Quality and technical consultants. This learning community agreed upon a subset of SEL skills that are observable and relevant, developed practical measures and practice standards to promote them, and created a theory to support the infusion of these practices across programs regardless of content. The resulting field guide shares best practices and collective expertise for equipping youth with the social emotional skills they need to thrive. Come learn more about this innovative project, the six social emotional domains highlighted, and engage in a hands-on activity to assess SEL practices and be more intentional about social and emotional skill building in your program.
Presented by Adrienne Bard, Portfolio Manager, David P. Weikart Center for Youth Program Quality, Baltimore, Md. and Kiylise Crutchfield, Training Design and Delivery Specialist, David P. Weikart Center for Youth Program Quality, Ypsilanti, Mich.
The value of laughter and humor is undeniable. Laughter reduces stress, boosts the immune system and can improve overall levels of life satisfaction and connection to others. Education is serious business but that doesn’t mean we have to take ourselves so seriously. And when it comes to helping students develop social emotional learning (SEL) competences, things like conflict resolution, self-management and problem solving don’t seem particularly funny. But what if you could use humor to teach those skills and to bring SEL concepts to life? Come to this session and learn how. This presentation will address how these SEL lessons can be taught using humor, laughter and playful processes. The thoughtful and expert use of humor, play and pop culture can make SEL programming more effective, memorable and enjoyable. Be prepared to learn, laugh and have some fun!
Presented by Ed Dunkelblau, SEL Consultant, Center for the Promotion of Social and Emotional Learning, and Director, Institute for Emotionally Intelligent Learning, Northbrook, Ill.
This interactive workshop will discuss the critical role of social emotional learning (SEL) in creating safe and caring learning environments in the classroom. SEL teaches students and adults the emotional intelligence competencies they need to be more self aware, make good decisions, develop empathy, appreciate diverse perspectives and improve the quality of their relationships. Participants will learn the importance of SEL-focused, comprehensive programs that involve all school stakeholders including administrators, teachers, students and parents. Specific examples will be provided that highlight successful SEL program implementation in schools across the country and research-based strategies for replicating this type of implementation will be explored.
Presented by Lauren Hyman Kaplan, SEL Consultant for the Center for the Promotion of Social and Emotional Learning and Academy for Social Emotional Learning and Rutgers University, Montclair, N.J.
Critical to the future of our society is the ability of its citizens to think critically and communicate effectively as well as establish and maintain respectful and caring relationships within a diverse population, listen with empathy and understanding, and work together collaboratively to problem solve important challenges. This session will explore the power of culturally responsive instructional practices to support both the literacy acquisition of students as well as the development of relationship skills that foster academic success. Participants will explore, analyze and identify defining characteristics of classroom communities that develop students’ ability to think critically about what they read and communicate effectively both orally and in writing. Furthermore, participants will explore explicit ways that development of social emotional competencies support student learning and prepare them for future success.
Presented by Elizabeth W. English, Ph.D., Manager of Educational Partnerships, Center for Collaborative Classroom, Reston, Va.; Lisa Davis, Director of Program Innovation and Student Well-Being, Howard County Public School System, Ellicott City, Md.; and Mary Tavegia, Professional Learning Lead, Center for Collaborative Classroom, La Grange, Ill.
The art of storytelling has always been significant in human history. Stories reflected the wisdom of ancestors, the excitement of adventurers and the devastations of heartbreak. Stories were used to teach young children life lessons and to communicate with people in far away lands. Unfortunately, storytelling is a disappearing skill. This workshop will explore how writing, sharing and listening to stories can improve students’ social and emotional awareness. Participants will receive a template that weaves emotional intelligence and executive functioning competencies into language arts and humanities curricula–all while stimulating creative thinking. The template can be used as a stand-alone SEL lesson, as a story starter for written language, and as a visual/performing arts integration. Bring stories back to life in your classroom and learn to do this in a way that has lasting impact on your students!
Presented by Anabel Jensen, President and Founder, Six Seconds, San Mateo, Calif. and Cherilyn Leet, Assistant Director of Education, Six Seconds, Phoenix, Ariz.
4:45 p.m. – 5:45 p.m. | Gentle/Beginner Yoga
Wednesday, May 22
7:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. | Mindfulness Room Open
7:30 a.m. – 3:15 p.m. | Registration and Exhibit Area Open
7:30 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. | Continental Breakfast
8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. | Opening Remarks and Keynote Address
In his keynote address, Dr. Maurice J. Elias will discuss how schools must reorganize to use social-emotional and character competencies as the basis for addressing pervasive issues of cultural and other diversity, equity, trauma (including those linked with poverty), and academic development. Based on four decades of work in schools, he will show how our expectations of ourselves and our students must rise to meet the increasingly complex demands of citizenship in a democracy and within global economics.
10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. | Exhibit Exploration
10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. | Gentle/Beginner Yoga
10:30 a.m. –12:00 p.m. | Workshops
Implementing an evidence-based program with fidelity is important in order to achieve anticipated outcomes. Yet, there are times when a lesson or activity does not quite seem to fit the particular mix of students in the room. Perhaps their learning modalities don’t align well with the design of the lesson or perhaps a bit more movement seems to be in order based on the time of day when the lesson is being delivered. In this workshop, participants will learn creative methods that can be used to adapt social emotional learning (SEL) lessons while maintaining the overall integrity of the program. Participants will examine adaptation criteria including context, culture, language, group characteristics and learning modalities. Challenges regarding program adaptation will be explored through group process and participants will discuss possible scenarios that may result in program failure and propose strategies for successful adaptation. Participants will also have the opportunity to adapt an actual SEL lesson, applying strategies that may provide flexibility with elements of lesson delivery in order to increase youth engagement and participation.
Presented by Lorena Nejaz, Biologist and Science Teacher, San Carlos del Maipo Foundation, Santiago Metropolitan Region, Chile; and Mikele Otegui, Psychologist, San Carlos del Maipo Foundation, Santiago Metropolitan Region, Chile
Historically, career education has been a focus of secondary education to provide middle and high school students with guidance around their options post-graduation. The introduction of Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) expanded the view of career education to emphasize K-8 as well. Progressive schools today have a new view of what it means to be “career ready” and they realize that social and emotional competencies play a big role in employability. Even with this realization, schools need support in identifying how to help prepare students for post-secondary success and how to make social and emotional skill-building an important area of emphasis when exploring careers and employment options. Participants in this workshop will examine what a comprehensive career readiness program can look like, beginning in elementary school, and how an integrated approach that combines academics, careers and social emotional learning skills can boost a student’s likelihood for employment success.
Presented by Linsey Covert, Chief Executive Officer, TEAMology LLC, Chambersburg, Pa.; Lisa DiBernardo, Director of Education, TEAMology LLC, Chambersburg, Pa.; and Joe Mahoney, Director of Behavioral/Mental Health and Social Work Services, Intermediate Unit 1, Coal Center, Pa.
Being “connected” in today’s digital world can be quite complicated. We have access to constant information at the touch of a screen and yet this access can come at a price. Overstimulation coupled with less human connection, can lead, not only to anxiety, but also isolation and detachment even in the midst of a large social network. During this interactive session, participants will learn how stress and overstimulation adversely impact the brain’s capacity for focus and learning and how this stress also impacts a student’s sense of belonging in the classroom. This session will introduce “brain breaks” which are short exercises designed to promote focus and engagement. As students experience the calming effects of these brain breaks, they are able to self-regulate, solve problems more effectively and ultimately, benefit from the warmth of classroom connections.
Presented by Gill McClean, Director of Professional Development, Pure Edge, Inc., Wilmington, N.C. and Michelle Mitchell, Director of Partnerships, Pure Edge, Inc., Wilmington, N.C.
Gone are the days when most adults believed that bullying was a “rite of passage” into young adulthood. Decades of research has brought new levels of understanding about the detrimental short and long-term effects of bullying on all students involved including those who aren’t active participants but who are bystanders in the process. Bullying is a potentially traumatic adverse childhood experience (ACE) that can have lasting impacts well into adulthood (stopbullying.gov). Conversely, children who report more ACEs are also more likely to exhibit bullying behavior. This sad truth has led to the often used phrase that “hurt people hurt people.” This workshop will explore the connection between bullying and ACEs and offer ideas and strategies to help educators promote and support student resilience. Tools and best practices in bullying prevention will be shared along with resources that can support a multi-tiered and comprehensive prevention program that brings together schools, families and communities.
Presented by Jane Riese, Associate Director, Safe and Humane Schools, Clemson University, York, Pa.
In this interactive workshop, participants will be introduced to and discuss the characteristics of a positive school climate, the inter-connection between school climate and social emotional learning (SEL), what drivers of climate have been identified from past research, and what tools and strategies are available to guide the collection and use of school data for successful school climate improvement efforts. There is an increasing focus on school climate efforts and SEL implementation nationally. However, schools have not been provided with many resources and supports to assess climate in valid and productive ways. Attendees will have the opportunity to share tools with each other and data they are currently using, participate in an exercise that will show them how to triangulate data to better understand their school and their students’ needs.
Presented by Maurice Elias, Professor and Director, Rutgers Social-Emotional and Character Development Lab, Rutgers University, Piscataway, N.J.; Patricia Heindel, Director, Center for Human and Social Development, Morristown, N.J.; and Elizabeth Warner, Co-Director, School Culture and Climate Initiative, United Way of Northern New Jersey, Morristown, N.J.
The ACT matrix is a simple, highly effective experiential approach for engaging students proactively as partners in learning the academic, social and emotional skills that lead to success in school and in life. This evidenced based training promotes real time psychological flexibility, which is the ability to manage oneself while continuing to persevere in the presence of obstacles. In classrooms this means more teaching, learning and solutions for everyday issues such as absenteeism, motivation, reluctance and resistance. The matrix also promotes psychological safety, the shared belief that a group is safe for interpersonal risk taking. The combination of psychological flexibility and safety creates a synergistic effect and a culture of cooperation, collaboration and caring. It can be used in classrooms, counseling sessions, homes and team meetings to set the context for respectful and productive interactions.
Presented by Phil Tenaglia, Licensed Psychologist and School Psychologist, Evolving Solutions, Langhorne, Pa.
The education system can be difficult for diverse families to navigate. Between the overuse of acronyms, seemingly unnecessary bureaucratic red tape, and now a growing climate of fear and hate speak it is important that families and educators are armed with the skills to support healthy learning environments for our most vulnerable students. This interactive session is designed to frame some of the many challenges that families and educators face in this current education climate including implicit bias as well as linguistic, ethnic and cultural diversity. The session will provide tools for supporting the social emotional and civic engagement of families as they navigate through the difficult waters of education. This session is intended to build the participants’ capacity to better serve linguistically and ethnically diverse families.
Presented by Kori Hamilton Biagas, SEL Consultant for the Center for the Promotion of Social and Emotional Learning and Senior Consultant for National School Climate Center, New York, N.Y.
As social emotional learning assessment becomes more common, the question is increasingly arising, “Should we provide students their individual assessment results?” Doing so has many advantages – students come to understand themselves better, engage in more informed self-reflection, are able to take leverage their strengths, are able to identify key areas for improvement, set specific goals and monitor progress. But, there are many objections, too. Providing students with information about low performing skills isn’t a strength-based strategy, and it might discourage or demoralize students. They might be more likely to game the assessments and form fixed mindsets about their capacity to improve. In this “soundclash” session, experts will present both sides of the debate, and ask participants to discuss and identify their own points of view. Sample student reports will also be examined and participants will consider how to address areas of concern.
Presented by Jonathan Martin, Director, K12 Consulting Services, ACT, Inc., Iowa City, Iowa; and Dana Murano, Research Scientist II, ACT, Inc., Iowa City, Iowa
Have you noticed that you are spending a lot of time reminding students of what they should be doing and redirecting them when they are off task? Do you go home exhausted from putting out fires all day? Does it ever feel like all you see is what your students could be doing better? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you could be in need of a language reboot. Reinforcing language is one of the most powerful forms of teacher language, yet also one of the most underutilized. Throughout this session, you will identify and apply key characteristics of effective reinforcing language, recognize ways to maximize its effectiveness, and consider common pitfalls when reinforcing students’ efforts.
Presented by: Michelle Gill, Professional Development Designer for Responsive Classroom, Center for Responsive Schools, Turners Falls, Mass.
Recent work by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Aspen Institute makes explicit the connections between social emotional learning (SEL) and equity in education. In this workshop, participants will explore the intersection of SEL and equity. How do SEL and equity advocates define the relationship between the two? Where are the barriers and opportunities for all students to develop their social and emotional competencies in safe, supportive learning environments? Building on the opportunities identified, participants will be introduced to ways in which SEL can be implemented through an equity lens. Finally, in order to make the theoretical more tangible, participants will learn about several evidence-based SEL programs built on a social justice foundation. Participants will leave with concrete ways to leverage SEL to increase equity in their classrooms and organizations.
Presented by Lori Nathanson, SEL Consultant, Center for the Promotion of Social and Emotional Learning and Lori Nathanson Consulting, LLC, New York, N.Y.
Leadership well-being is crucial to organizational well-being. Promoting professional well-being and optimal performance goes beyond retreats, mental health days and one-off workshops. It starts with a commitment amongst leaders and professionals that becomes reality through daily interactions and shared effort. Research and increased understanding about the connection of well-being and performance are changing culture conversations, yet without implementation, old habits and behaviors sit at the helm. In this session, participants will explore the interdependent nature of leadership well-being and organizational well-being and the protective factors that safeguard leaders from compassion fatigue. Practical resources and strategies will be shared that not only boost organizational efficiency but also empower others to step into leadership roles, realize a sense of professional fulfillment and to share the responsibility for reaching organizational goals.
Presented by Erin Browder, Education Consultant specializing in Safe and Supportive Organizations, Erin Browder, LLC, Los Angeles, Calif.
The “active ingredient” in any child or youth program is the developmental relationship between the children and their adult leaders (Li & Julian, 2012). The basic building blocks of such relationships are the day-to-day interactions between children and the adults who teach and care for them. It is through these everyday interactions that children can learn social and emotional skills. This is where social emotional learning (SEL) can be “caught” versus other approaches in which SEL can be “taught.” This session will be an introduction to Simple Interactions – a strengths based, practice-focused, and community-supported approach to professional development – that seeks to strengthen simple, everyday adult-child interactions across varied developmental settings. Come explore how the revolutionary simple and efficient one-page Simple Interactions Tool along with authentic field videos have helped professionals build and sustain communities of practice and contribute to the social emotional growth of children across a wide range of child-serving settings.
Presented by Stephanie Lewis, Manager of Partnerships and Quality Improvement, United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania, Allegheny Partners for Out-of-School Time, Pittsburgh, Pa.; and Annie McNamara, Graduate Student Researcher, United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania, Allegheny Partners for Out-of-School Time, Pittsburgh, Pa.
Teachers lose an average of 5-9 hours a week dealing with minor misbehavior but it does not have to be that way! Can you imagine a classroom where non-compliant students learn to self-correct inappropriate behavior? Just think about all the instruction that could be accomplished with those hours available. Forget ‘paying’ students to behave right. Forget the paperwork overload for teachers and administrators. Positive, appropriate, productive classroom behavior can be taught systematically. It’s worth the time and effort to show students, teachers and administrators a better way to interact in the classroom. In this workshop, participants will learn strategies for effective classroom management that will end the student-teacher power struggles, improve academic performance and greatly reduce the need for discipline referrals.
Presented by Sheila Brown, Educator, Certified National Trainer, Master the Class!, Silver Spring, Md.
12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. | Lunch
1:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. | Exhibit Exploration
1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. | Workshops
Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) have an impact on an individual’s coping skills, brain development and school performance as well as their life expectancy, risk of addiction and suicide. Participants in this workshop will examine the research around adverse childhood experiences and how they impact children and adults either at the time of the trauma or through re-traumatization. In addition to examining this research, participants will learn about indirect and responsive services that can be provided to positively impact student achievement and reduce barriers to success. Practical strategies to build resilience in students will be explored. Finally, the efforts taken by one district to help staff and students become more trauma-sensitive will be showcased and lessons learned will be discussed and examined.
Presented by Jeannette Fodness, Math Teacher and Instructional Math Coach, West Shore School District, Mechanicsburg, Pa.; and Ellen Smith, Family Physician, West Shore School District, Camp Hill, Pa.
Mr. Rogers said “play is the serious work of childhood.” There has been an abundance of research around play and its positive effects on youth physical, cognitive and social development. One way, in particular, that play can be beneficial for youth is by providing a pathway for them to practice and enhance their empathy skills. Whether we are referring to the emotional side of empathy or the cognitive side, often referred to as “perspective-taking,” play creates opportunities for growth. In this active and engaging session, participants will tap into the most valuable elements of play and discover activities, games and teaching modalities that activate empathy for students and help make empathy an area of focus in the classroom and the overall school.
Presented by S. Alex Fizz, Student Services Coordinator, Thom Stecher and Associates, Malvern, Pa.
Teachers recognize the importance of student social and emotional skill development; however, they often feel as though they do not have the dedicated time to explicitly teach social emotional learning (SEL) skills. One approach teachers can use to support student social, emotional and academic skills while strengthening school culture is through advisory. Advisory is a dedicated time of the day where students and teachers build interpersonal relationships through community building activities, goal setting and character development. Advisory: A Time for Building Community Through SEL will provide participants with an introductory framework for creating an advisory program grounded in SEL competencies.
Presented by Jamila Zakiya Sams, Chief Executive Officer, Go to Ms.Sams Inc., Baltimore, Md.
Positive psychology is the scientific study of the strengths that enable individuals and communities to thrive. As positive psychology has flourished, so have the techniques, models and tools available for practitioners. The Positive Emotion, Engagement, Relationships, Meaning and Accomplishments (PERMA) model was designed by Dr. Martin Seligman with five core elements of psychological well-being and happiness. The model is based on the belief that that these five elements can help people reach a life of fulfillment, happiness and meaning. In this thought-provoking and informative session, participants will review clinical strategies within the PERMA model, specifically, the significance of each attribute and how each can be used to benefit individuals with a neurodiverse profile to increase social and emotional development. Participants will also explore the value of using a coaching model for working with individuals as a tool, in comparison to therapy, mentoring and consulting techniques.
Presented by Brenda Eaton, Positive Psychology Practitioner, BrendaEaton.life, Malvern, Pa.
Two findings from a recent study conducted with 90 social-emotional learning professionals, who were also parents, concluded that parents care about their children’s social-emotional development and care about using social-emotional strategies in their own parenting practices. In this session, participants will learn how to communicate about social emotional learning (SEL) when talking to parents, practitioners and scholars. While these groups are not far from each other in their values, sharing ideas and working together can, at times, be challenging when their words and examples are not aligned. Participants will explore vignettes gathered from SEL experts, who are also parents, that highlight the connections and the disconnections across settings. Additionally, evidence from school-based SEL research will be shared in terms of its applicability to parenting and ways the field might be informed by this rich body of work while adapting to the unique needs of parents. Participants will enjoy a brainstorming activity to identify ways to translate best practices to parenting from varying cultural backgrounds and a wide range of family histories.
Presented by Jennifer Miller, Parenting Expert, Office of Child Development, University of Pittsburgh, Columbus, Ohio and Shannon Wanless, Director and Associate Professor, Office of Child Development, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pa.
How do you reach the hardest-to-reach students? How do you engage the most disengaged? After nearly a decade of social emotional learning (SEL) integration into targeted Tier 2 and Tier 3 interventions, SEL is now penetrating Tier 1 in one district after a successful pilot with special needs students. This wasn’t an easy journey, but has certainly been worthwhile. Join us in learning about how to build both the relationships with students and the structure necessary to have a lasting impact on students at risk for drop-out, truancy, substance use and/or emotional/behavioral disorders. Learn fun and effective ways to build protective factors into your students’ lives through SEL skills training in emotional management, goal setting, coping strategies, social skills, and developing a sense of purpose and direction.
Presented by Monica King, Lead Implementer, School-Connect, Owings Mills, Md.
While mindfulness has become a buzzword in education and in the world of wellness, what do we really mean when we talk about practicing it? Mindfulness is more than seated meditation and #selfcare. When integrated authentically and in a trauma-informed way, mindfulness can be instrumental in promoting social emotional development as well as creating a culture of wellness in any community. Through this workshop, participants will develop their mindfulness toolkit, gaining an understanding of the social emotional capacities cultivated through mindfulness as well as best practices in how to meaningfully integrate mindfulness into their school culture, climate and curricula. This workshop will be highly experiential, so come prepared to engage in activities!
Presented by Megan Gildin, Founder and Chief Experience Officer, The Be Collaborative, Philadelphia, Pa.
Music is a universal language that connects us all, but we may not all be confident using it in the classroom. In this session, attendees will borrow simple tools from the music educator’s toolbox that can help guide their students on the journey to all five competencies! Students and teachers alike gain understanding of the human elements essential to the creative process as they express themselves through the arts. Music also offers a safe and accessible place for students who may benefit from this kind of emotional outlet. By bringing this culture into all classroom settings, teachers can encourage students to feel comfortable and confident and ensure that they find their place. Develop your inner musician and supercharge social emotional learning in your classroom!
Presented by Graham Hepburn, Co-Founder and Vice President of Content, QuaverMusic.com, Nashville, Tenn.
Social emotional learning (SEL) and discipline practices are often siloed in schools. SEL may be taught in isolated classes, while student misbehaviors are addressed by other staff. For students to truly grow in their social-emotional competencies, SEL and restorative discipline practices need to live hand in hand. Restorative Justice (RJ) is an umbrella practice that can foster students’ conflict resolution skills, perspective taking and empathy, while also addressing issues of disproportionality in school discipline that often unfairly penalize students of color. RJ encourages students to grow in their social awareness and relationship skills and can be interwoven with comprehensive SEL programming. SEL should not only be taught once a week in a particular class, but needs to be integrated throughout the school day by staff modeling and fostering social-emotional competencies at numerous teachable moments. This session will present a model for how RJ and SEL can be implemented together in a K-8 setting.
Presented by Soundhari Balaguru, Director of SEL and Mental Health, ChangeMakers Academy, Vallejo, Calif.; Rachael Weingarten, Co-Principal, ChangeMakers Academy, Lafayette, Calif.; and Nenji Yilpet, Co-Principal, ChangeMakers Academy, Vallejo, Calif.
The post-secondary vision for all students is that they leave school with the knowledge and skills necessary to lead independent, self-determined and productive lives. An important part of their future and independence includes the ability to make and maintain healthy relationships and to gain meaningful employment. Essential to achieving this success are the elements of social emotional learning (SEL). However, teaching SEL as a separate class, once or twice a week is insufficient to achieve a lasting effect. This workshop will introduce one school’s project to intentionally and explicitly weave SEL with traditional academic and functional skills instruction. Through this unique unit/lesson plan design called “PLAID (Positive Learning and Integrated Design),” teachers plan for and deliver SEL instruction throughout the day, in every lesson rather than in isolation. Students have the opportunity to practice SEL skills in real-world and simulated activities rather than in a separate settings requiring generalization and transfer. Participants will be introduced to the conceptual framework of PLAID, review preliminary research regarding its efficacy to effect sustainable skill acquisition, and brainstorm applicability to their own experience and situation.
Presented by Tracy Larson, Nationally Certified School Psychologist Director, Early Childhood Partnerships Healthy CHILD, Healthy Infants, COMET, SPECS, University of Pittsburgh School of Education Office of Child Development, Pittsburgh, Pa. and Karen Shepherd, Chief Executive Officer, Pace School, Pittsburgh, Pa.
In 2015, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that more than 35 percent of children have experienced two or more adverse childhood experiences such as physical abuse or exposure to mental illness, drug or alcohol addiction, or the incarceration of a family member. This increases students’ stress hormones and misbehavior, which creates extra and demanding challeneges for teachers and administrators. One solution is a toolbox of strategies to cope with the emotions of their demanding work. This workshop provides practical skills in self-awareness and self-management in order to support effectively building relationships and navigating behavior issues, supporting student learning and experiencing the empowered presence of teaching and decision-making from a state of less stress and more calm.
Presented by Heidi Stevenson, Associate Professor, University of the Pacific, Stockton, Calif.
Civic education can provide wonderful learning experiences to equip and empower our next generation of leaders to utilize their own liberty to make positive contributions in their local and global communities. In this session, participants will have the unique opportunity to examine an engaging student-centered approach that combines social science, civics and government, and character education and development. The goal of this session is to model a learning environment that encourages critical thinking and student inquiry into the root causes of social issues. In addition, the collaborative nature of this session invites thoughtful and intentional participation from all members of the learning community. Participants will engage in an opinion continuum exercise based on the activity “Walk the Line” that focuses on the responsible use of first amendment rights in character education and leadership development. Participants will receive a pack of complimentary activities and lessons from the National Liberty Museum’s Young Heroes program designed for grades 4-8.
Presented by Jean Byrne, Director of Education and Outreach, The National Liberty Museum, Philadelphia, Pa.; and Eden Cho, Outreach Educator, The National Liberty Museum, Philadelphia, Pa.